Jose Rodriguez: Suspended Boynton Beach mayor faces three new felony charges; new trial date


Suspended Mayor José Rodriguez, already facing corruption charges, was booked Monday on three new felony charges, authorities confirmed.

Details were expected later Monday evening.

Rodriguez' trial on the previous charges, set to start in two weeks, has been pushed back to October, court documents show.

And on Monday afternoon, Rodriguez' lawyer said he filed new motions calling for those charges against Rodriguez to be dismissed.

Rodriguez, 49, was arrested Jan. 26 after allegations that he pressured Boynton Beach Police Chief Matt Immler and interim City Manager Lori LaVerriere to stop an investigation into his alleged abuse of his stepdaughter, then 11.

Investigators concluded the child-abuse allegations were unfounded, but Rodriguez was charged with abusing his power as mayor.

In June, prosecutors added to the original three counts a fourth that made Rodriguez the first person ever charged under Palm Beach County's year-old ethics ordinance.

Rodriguez lawyers later challenged that newest count as unconstitutionally vague and conflicting with state law.

Attorney Jason Weiss confirmed Monday he filed motions to toss the original three counts as well. The documents could not obtained from the Palm Beach County Court clerk late Monday.

Rodriguez, suspended the day after his arrest, could face more than 15 years in prison if convicted. He has proclaimed his innocence.

Assistant State Attorney Daniel Funk, the prosecutor in the case, did not return calls on Monday.

Weiss said Monday the trial delay is connected to those new filings, Palm Beach County Circuit Judge Charles E. Burton's calendar, and other issues he declined to divulge.

On Thursday Burton signed an order moving jury selection from Friday, July 27, to Friday. Oct. 26, with the trial — expected to take three days — to start the following Monday, Oct. 29.

The printed order had set jury selection for Sept. 14, but Burton crossed that out by hand and wrote in the October date.

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